Our first Artist Demonstration Evening in our Auckland gallery was a huge success, with people coming from across Auckland and the Coromandel to see our artists Vjekoslav Nemesh and Gary Brooks' art making processes in action.
Nemesh's striking paintings were even more exciting to see in progress. Starting the evening with a fresh canvas he stretched himself, Nemesh worked layers of oil paints using a wide variety of tools for layering, scraping, and blending. Nemesh has a fantastic way with colour, and in this work he used vibrant azures, turquoises, yellows and violets. His current paintings deal with ideas of the 'inter-dimensional' and with the layers and textures he creates, his paintings are really like looking through to another dimension. Nemesh was a great demonstrator, encouraging our audience to have a go adding to his painting and asking what steps he should take next.
It was also very interesting to see Gary's process of making his popular concrete orbs. Each orb is hand cast in concrete, and when dry painted with layers of paint and glue on the insides for the gold and coloured leaf to adhere to. The sheets of leaf are very delicate and have to be applied with care, but Gary's practiced hand finishes it with ease. Finally the insides are coated with a varnish finish for protection and to add a final layer of sheen. The finished leaf looks stunning under the light and some of our guests couldn't resist taking a still-drying orb away with them!
The interactive process was a highlight for many, with visitors having the chance to have a go at applying the leaf to Gary's orbs and adding layers to Nemesh's painting. Seeing the amount of work that goes into the final product made everyone appreciate the work even more.
It was a great evening and we received lots of positive feedback from our audience who loved seeing the 'behind-the-scenes' of art making. We're already looking forward to our next Artist Demonstration Evening next month, Thursday 16 March, with our wonderful artists: Jo Dalgety, Kirsty Black and Keron Smith. We hope to see you there!